A Racist Christmas Surprise

This week my two nephews were up for a visit.  While Noah wanted to pile on hats and costumes…

… his big brother, Angus, wanted to play Scooby Doo on the Wii all day and night.

This afternoon, in between lots of chasing, fighting and the occasional tantrum, the boys were calm enough to sit down and watch a nice little Christmas special.  Since the boys were going with Grandma and Grandpa to see the Grinch on Ice and to sit on Santa’s lap we found a great little set of cartoons for the boys to watch:

I figured a nice and wholesome set of cartoon from the 50s would be just that…nice and wholesome.  Rudolph’s cartoon was pretty much that as we saw the story of the red nosed outcast and how he became the lead dog on the Christmas Iditarod.   But I was not expecting the second cartoon.

I guess I shouldn’t have been shocked seeing as the name of the cartoon had the word Surprise right there in big red letters.  But I was not really prepared for the cartoon I was about to watch.  The whole premise of the cartoon is that Santa is so tired and overworked that his place up north is just a pig sty.  So a group of kids, representing the different peoples around the world, get together and give Santa’s place a good cleaning.  From the looks of Santa’s workshop he should have been a candidate from the show Hoarders.  But the kids roll up their sleeves and really do a great job of cleaning.

What was so shocking to me was the total racism when it came to depicting the different kids.  The little black kid was all Sambo’ed out:

And while the little white girl and boy are cleaning up the dirty dishes, what do you think they have the little black kid doing?  Yep, he is shining shoes.

Seriously,  shining shoes.

And then they switched over to the Asian characters…anyone have a guess at what they were doing?  Yep, the laundry.

I was nervously chuckling while my nephews were just blankly staring at the TV.  I was sure glad they are too young to understand why I was laughing.

If you want to order your own DVD to have this treasure for yourself you can order one for under $10 from Amazon by clicking here.

Or you can just stream it from Netflix like we did.

Merry Christmas everyone.

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6 Comments

Filed under DC, Family, TV

6 responses to “A Racist Christmas Surprise

  1. Malice

    Call me racist, but I don’t really see the racism. Stereotyping, certainly, but I think people are losing the meaning of racism. Really the cartoons msg was that people from different cultures (Stereotyped or not) were working together as equals to achieve a goal which is exactly NOT racist, no one was hating anyone else and no one was placing themselves above each other. We are different culturally, its a fact. Look at any of the unity songs that are sung, all the kids are usually dressed in their ‘cultural’ stereotype outfits, etc. Those songs aren’t racist, they are spreading a msg that no matter any differences, we should be united, it does not automatically make it racist that it then used Stereotypes as ear markers to easily sell to the viewer where they are from.

  2. “Cultural stereotype outfits” is one thing. While those Unity songs are being sung are the black kids shining shoes and the asian kids (all of them mind you) doing the laundry? If so it wouldn’t be so much about Unity. And it was the 50s…it isn’t like this wasn’t common anyway at the time.

  3. Malice

    Exactly, it was the 50’s, it was really the most likely place to find minorities in cities at the time. Racism is ‘hate’ though, and no hate is projected.

    Don’t let your ‘white guilt’ get to you.

    Remember, this is a visual media, when doing a visual media, you are, by the medium, going to exaggerate to get points across as well. I mean how would you describe a Chicago Cop if you were writing a movie? Likely a Irish or Polish fat man who is kinda on the take but is generally a good cop. Does that make the film maker racist or the intent racist?

  4. P & Red

    if any network channel aired this ppl would be coming out of the woodwork to call them a racist network…plain and simple. it would NOT be called a ‘cultural stereotype’ programming decision. i’m just sayin. ~ red

  5. holly

    duuuuuuude, that one is supposed to get forwarded over. nice work with the remote, jackass.

  6. holly

    also….isn’t it strange that the cartoon presents the dutch kid as some sort of half-wit? and this is going to make me sound the most racist of all god’s creatures, which i am not, but i wish i knew where that stereotype came from.

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